American Roots

For this edition of New Sounds, there’s music by master guitarist Brandon Ross, a versatile musician who has worked with the likes of Henry Threadgill, Butch Morris, Oliver Lake, and Cassandra Wilson. Listen to selections from his brilliant new CD, “Costume,’ which runs the gamut from acoustic guitar to twangily intense banjo, cornet to Chinese flute, and features the poetry and vocals of Sadiq Bey. But wait, there’s more. Hear the Turtle Island String Quartet play a slightly twisted but affectionate work dedicated to and named for the painter Grant Wood, known best for his “American Gothic.” Plus, a deconstructionist fantasy on “Louie Louie” from environmentalist mayor, former MTV rocker, and composer Phillip Kent Bimstein.

PROGRAM # 2403, American Roots (First aired on Thurs., 4/21/05)

Rev. Gary Davis The Sun Of Our Life Fast Blues in A [1:30] Arbiter #2005** *
Big Bad Love Motion Picture Soundtrack Kenny Brown: Boxcar Blues [2:00] Nonesuch #79637*
Cassandra Wilson Belly Of The Sun You Gotta Move [2:30]
Road So Clear [5:30]
Hot Tamales [1:30]
Blue Note #35072** *
Big Bad Love Motion Picture Soundtrack Asie Payton: I Love You [2:30] See above.
Brandon Ross Costume No Wonder [7:00] Intoxicate #1004
Turtle Island String Quartet Skylife Grant Wood [5:30] Windham Hill #0126, out of print, but check* or auction sites.
Info at
Modern Mandolin Quartet Pan-American Journeys P.K. Bimstein: The Louie Louie Variations [9:00] Windham Hill #11135, out of print, but check* or auction sites. More info at
Philip Aaberg Upright Upright [3:30] Windham Hill #1088, seems to be out of print, but check
Rev. Gary Davis The Sun of Our Life West Coast Blues [2:00] See above.

*, ** Find the recordings you've heard - go to the New Sounds Recordings Information page